|Born||July 24, 1904
San Francisco, California
|Died||August 17, 1977
La Jolla, California
|Occupation||Film director, screenwriter, film producer|
Delmer Daves (July 24, 1904 – August 17, 1977) was an American screenwriter, director and producer.
Born in San Francisco, Delmer Daves first pursued a career as a lawyer. While attending Stanford University, he became interested in the burgeoning film industry, first working as a prop boy on the Western The Covered Wagon (1923) and serving as a technical advisor on a number of films. After finishing his education in law, he continued his career in Hollywood.
After moving to Hollywood in 1928, he became a screenwriter, his first credit being the "talkie" comedy So This Is College, released by MGM. Through the 1930s, he made himself a name as a successful screenplay and story writer, while moonlighting as an actor in bit parts and uncredited roles. He penned the successful Dick Powell musicals Dames, Flirtation Walk, and Paging Miss Glory between 1934 and 1935. Daves' largest successes of the period, however, came with The Petrified Forest (1936) and Love Affair (1939). Almost twenty years later, Leo McCarey, director of Love Affair, would helm the nearly identical An Affair to Remember (1957) using Daves' script.
Daves made his directorial debut in the Cary Grant wartime adventure Destination Tokyo in 1943. Over the course of his twenty-two-year career, Daves cultivated an unpretentious style, taking a relaxed approach to filming and letting the actors and screenplay drive the film. His most notable films include Dark Passage (1947), which utilized a first-person approach to great effect, the critically acclaimed Broken Arrow (1950), the westerns 3:10 to Yuma (1957) and The Hanging Tree (1959), the Cold War drama Never Let Me Go (1953), and the melodramatic A Summer Place (1959). Daves garnered a Directors Guild of America Award nomination for his work on 1958's Cowboy. Spencer's Mountain (1963), which he wrote, directed, and produced, was based upon Earl Hamner's autobiographical novel of the same name, and served as the basis for the popular television series The Waltons.
He would be known for his dramas and for the Western adventures that saw heroes battle Indians, nature, and outlaws, the two most acclaimed of these being Broken Arrow and 3:10 to Yuma. In addition, Daves would work with some of the most famous actors of the time; a few would make several movies with him, including Gary Cooper, Glenn Ford, Richard Egan, Alan Ladd, Troy Donahue, Ernest Borgnine, and Rossano Brazzi. He also launched soon to be famous stars like Anne Bancroft, Olivia Hussey, George C. Scott, Sandra Dee, and Charles Bronson.
Daves was married to actress Mary Lawrence from 1938 until his death on August 17, 1977.
- Queen Kelly (1929, writer - uncredited)
- So This Is College (1929, screenplay)
- Shipmates (1931, adaptation and dialogue)
- Dames (1934, writer)
- Flirtation Walk (1934, writer)
- Page Miss Glory (1935, writer)
- The Petrified Forest (1936, writer)
- The Go Getter (1937, writer)
- Love Affair (1939, writer)
- Night of January 16th (1941, co-writer with Robert Pirosh)
- You Were Never Lovelier (1942, writer)
- Stage Door Canteen (1943, writer)
- Destination Tokyo (1943, director and writer)
- The Very Thought of You (1944, director and writer)
- Hollywood Canteen (1944, director and writer)
- The Red House (1947, director and writer)
- Dark Passage (1947, director and writer)
- Task Force (1949, director and writer)
- Broken Arrow (1950, director)
- Bird of Paradise (1951, director and writer)
- Treasure of the Golden Condor (1953 director and co-writer)
- Never Let Me Go (1953, director)
- Drum Beat (1954, director, writer, and producer)
- Demetrius and the Gladiators (1954, director)
- White Feather (1955, writer)
- The Last Wagon (1956, director and writer)
- Jubal (1956, director and writer)
- 3:10 to Yuma (1957, director)
- An Affair to Remember (1957, writer)
- Cowboy (1958, director)
- Kings Go Forth (1958)
- The Hanging Tree (1959, director)
- A Summer Place (1959, director, writer, and producer)
- Parrish (1961, director, writer, and producer)
- Rome Adventure (1962, director, co-writer, producer)
- Spencer's Mountain (1963, director, writer, and producer)
- Youngblood Hawke (1964, director, writer)
- The Battle of the Villa Fiorita (1965, director, producer, writer)